The prevalence of sub-clinical endometritis (scEndo) and identification of serum markers of scEndo was investigated in pasture-fed, postpartum dairy cows. Mixed age lactating dairy cows (n = 169) were examined for uterine health status on day (D) 21 postpartum (± 3 days) by Metricheck classification. On D42 in a subpopulation (n = 47; 32 clean, 15 scEndo) Metricheck assessment was repeated and uterine cytology undertaken on D21 and D42 [scEndo = polymorphicnuclear (PMN) cells >18%]. Uterine bacteriology, as well as haematological, biochemical and milk parameters were also measured. The prevalence of scEndo was 15/169 (8.9%) and 4/47 (8.5%) cows on D21 and D42 respectively. A high incidence of self-resolving scEndo (11/15, 73%) was revealed. Numerous species of pathogenic bacteria were isolated from both scEndo and clean cows. Despite the uterine infection being sub-clinical, systemic markers were detectable as on D21 and D42 haematological and biochemical parameters differed. Irrespective of the scEndo classification method used, the mean blood neutrophil concentration was higher (P <0.05) and plasma albumin lower (<0.05) in scEndo cows compared to clean cows. Milk fat and protein % also differed (P <0.05) between scEndo and clean cows. The monitoring in early lactation of these markers could aid identification of scEndo, thereby preventing potentially detrimental effects on subsequent fertility.

MP, Green, AM Ledgard, MC Berg, AJ Peterson, and PJ Back

Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 69, Christchurch, 37-42, 2009
Download Full PDF BibTEX Citation Endnote Citation Search the Proceedings

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.